Iraq: shiite leader ali sistani calls for early general elections. Bremer seeks un support for own election mode
"America claims it is bringing democracy and freedoms to countries. Well, let it give us elections. Especially since we have lived through 35 years of darkness, we need an election that represents the people." a voice among the nearly 100,000 shiites who took to the streets of baghdad today to demand elections that will finally give iraq a sovereign government.
Bremer and his administration also want elections, but according to the timetable set in mid-november and with an election mode to which shiite leader ayatollah ali sistani has shown clear opposition from the outset. Bremer and some members of the iraqi governing council are in new york today to get the support of kofi annan, the un secretary general: annan is expected to help "godfather" convince the shiites that a general election in iraq cannot be held in the short time until june for technical reasons. The leitmotif is that the un’s involvement, the details of which are still unclear, should give the elections a legitimacy that outweighs the constant doubts as to whether the transition mode proposed by the americans is guided more by american interests than by the oft-invoked intention of leaving iraq to the iraqis as soon as possible.